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LSD May Boost Emotional Wellbeing

Update Date: Mar 05, 2015 06:01 PM EST

LSD and magic mushrooms don't increase the risk of mental health problems, according to new research.

After analyzing data from more than 135,000 randomly chosen participants of the US National Health Survey (2008-2011), researchers found no link between the use of psychedelic drug use and psychological distress, depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, plans, and attempts.

Lead researcher Teri Krebs of Norwegian University of Science and Technology said the latest findings support previous findings from earlier population studies.

"Over 30 million US adults have tried psychedelics and there just is not much evidence of health problems," clinical psychologist Pål Ostroke Johansen said in a news release.

"Drug experts consistently rank LSD and psilocybin mushrooms as much less harmful to the individual user and to society compared to alcohol and other controlled substances," Krebs added.

Researchers noted that psychedelic drug use might also promote mental wellbeing.

"Many people report deeply meaningful experiences and lasting beneficial effects from using psychedelics," explained Krebs.

"With these robust findings, it is difficult to see how prohibition of psychedelics can be justified as a public health measure," said Johansen.

"Concerns have been raised that the ban on use of psychedelics is a violation of the human rights to belief and spiritual practice, full development of the personality, and free-time and play," Krebs concluded.

The findings were published in the journal Lancet Psychiatry.

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